Out and About in Beijing

We were lucky to be invited back to visit Beijing in November and December.

We met old friends and gained new ones at the International School of Beijing and the Beijing City International School.

We began our visit with a week at ISB, where we worked with Grade 5 students on their writing skills – and what a great bunch they were! We thoroughly enjoyed working with them and LOVED their enthusiasm!

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World Air Toss – crazy name, crazy game!

We also witnessed a strange sport – The final of the World Air Toss! We think we understood the rules – basically, students had to swing on a rope and throw balls into a basketball hoop and then hope it landed in a bucket (told you it was strange!) and they did this against another team 15 minutes or so and then they swapped over and did it all again and then added up all the points the winner was the one with the most points! (Phew!)

It was an incredibly exciting and noisy event – students even wore fancy dress costume for it! We loved the superman costumes!

Thanks to Karen, Jasmeen, Anne, Spencer and ALL the staff for making our visit so brilliant!

We also managed to do some “tourist” stuff, despite the cold weather (MINUS 10 one night!)

We celebrated Thanksgiving Day with a traditional turkey dinner in The Irish Volunteer (an Irish pub in Beijing!)

Thanksgiving in Beijing!
Thanksgiving in Beijing!









Visited the night markets for food. Scorpion/snake and bugs were not tasted this trip!


Barlow takes on a stick of squid











Unusual foodstuffs!









Maybe we should have chosen the right cuisine!











Met up with our good friend John Byrne from WAB for local kitchen grub and BBQ smokehouse eats (not jealous of the villa at all, oh no…).

Transport was interesting. We arrived at one event in some bizarre motorcycles!












Postman Pat meets Bubbleman! Luckily we survived!

Book sales were once again organised by Alex and Angela and we had a great Saturday morning visiting Alex’s bookshop- Star Kids Children’s Bookstore, where we entertained a crowd.

Alex’s Bookshop
Alex’s Bookshop









The second week saw us in BCIS, a school we’d visited 7 years ago. We visited both elementary and secondary schools. Glenn and Megan looked after us and once more we thoroughly appreciated the enthusiasm of all the staff and students. It really was a great week – thanks everyone!

The build up to Christmas was interesting – from December 1st it was FULL ON!

The Mercure hotel went to town with decorations – including a full size replica Gingerbread house in the foyer, complete with smoke coming out of the chimney!

A carol service in the IV pub was also a highlight – organised by our mate, Rob from Western Academy of Beijing and led by Paul (WAB teacher from Middlesbrough!). The singing of Twelve Days of Christmas left a lot to be desired!


Gingerbread cottage in a hotel!
Gingerbread cottage in a hotel!









So after a full on couple of weeks, we arrived back home tired and with colds, so did we enjoy it and did the schools like what we did?

Well, we’re heading back again in August so that answers the question!